The Future Role of the United States in European Security: Determining Factors
ARMY WAR COLL CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
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Events in Europe in recent years have shaken the world and made assumptions about the present and presumptions regarding the future irrelevant almost overnight. Within this torrent of change and climate of uncertainty, a dominating issue of debate has been the future of European security and, in particular, the role of the United States. This is not the first time, however, that these questions have been addressed. In the post-World War II era, 1945- 1948, the same issues were the focus of American and European attention. That period of transition culminated in a common defense system and an American commitment that has lasted over four decades. In the current period of transition and reassessment, the answers to similar questions are not foreordained, and the decisions made are likely to shape the future of European security and the American role for years to come. This paper builds on an historical examination of events in 1945-1948, and then focuses on the determining factors in the current and near term, 1990-1993. Contrast and comparison of the two periods yields identification of common factors which will interact to influence how the United States participates in a future European security system.
- Government and Political Science
- Humanities and History
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics